If you have read this blog any length of time, you probably know I enjoy planning. =)
But planning isn’t always for everyone … but I think it can be a blessing in your homeschool. *deep breath*
I don’t believe planning has to bog us down.
Though I used to “plan” a lot, and not actually implement much of it, I have learned to plan what I enjoy, and then I feel free to do the other things, without dreading them. They don’t have a chance to become the elephant on my list if I don’t put them on there! =P
The same goes for planning homeschool- I enjoy planning out our week by writing in all our options (different books to read, workbooks, lapbooks, activities, field trips), but then I pick and choose what we actually want to do, and add in some things as we go, that I didn’t actually plan to begin with.
If you are a list checker, that can be hard .. but I am a
reformed(?) list checker. I love to check things of my list, sometimes I even write in random things I’ve done to feel more productive- (my serious list checkers SO know what I am talking about!) I believe you can still live freely, while planning and being a list checker.
You start by giving yourself grace; after the first week or so of not completing every. single. thing. on the list, you start to realize it is okay, and there are always more days to do more things.
But maybe you aren’t a list checker? Maybe you don’t know how to plan, or you hate planning, or you plan and then never look at it.
I believe planning is just habit; it isn’t something we all wake up able to do. Like anything else in life, if you aren’t a born natural at XYZ, then you practice and make it a habit to practice, focus, and implement. Then it becomes easier.
What Planner to Use?
There are SO many options out there- the homeschool groups and forums are a-buzz with different planners.
I think first you need to decide what type of learner/planner you are.
Paper or Technology? You pick!
Some of us NEED a paper planner. That would be me. I have a google calendar that links my dr. appointments, and big local events (things that are options but not MUST do’s), etc and I do look at it for those things. But for me, to remember I have things planned, and remember to implement them I need a paper planner that I physically write in.
I prefer The Ultimate Homeschool Planner OR Mardel’s Simple Plan planner. I have used both, and love them equally. This year I will be using The Ultimate Homeschool Planner. You can see my review on the UHS HERE.
I believe Mardel’s Simple Plan is sold out online (it usually sells out very quickly in July when it launches! See if you have a Mardel store near you). The Hey Mama! Homeschool Planner by The Old Schoolhouse is very similar to both of the previous mentioned planners and is a great quality planner. See my review for it HERE.
There is also the Erin Condren Teacher’s Planner (though I have no experience with this and am aware it is set up for classrooms). Some people prefer making their own grid style sheets and putting in a notebook. Others prefer to print a planner to personalize, while still yet some prefer to just keep an ongoing list of things to do in an app.
(haha) How you plan is up to you. But be responsible with your planning- KNOW WHAT WORKS FOR YOU! If you have been planning using an app for the last year and it just isn’t working, try something else. However, once you find what works, stick with it!
Planning your homeschool days, or simply planning themes for a season, can be a true blessing!
I believe keeping Christ the center of your home and thus homeschool, can alleviate any anxiety with planning. Don’t let planning (or the curriculum, or the books, or the activities, or the co-ops …) become an idol in your homeschool. There in itself can lie anxiety and fret. Keeping Him the center of your home and homeschool will truly bless all parts- including planning. =)
How do you like to plan? What keeps you on track?
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